Permanent Art Installation; Powder-coated aluminum and stainless steel
Location of Artwork
Concourse, Center Pier
Each sculpture: 52' 2” h x 20'4” w x 20’4” d Commissioned by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and Munich Airport NJ, in partnership with Public Art Fund
Photo: Nicholas Knight, courtesy Tanya Bonakdar Gallery and Public Art Fund
Commissioned by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and Munich Airport NJ, in partnership with Public Art Fund
To create Approach, Karyn Olivier embarked on an extensive photographic survey of Newark, Elizabeth, and the surrounding region. She captured the extraordinary tapestry of New Jersey's iconic skylines, robust infrastructure and natural beauty. Slices of land and sky are suspended in two helix-like structures: one that depicts daytime and the other, night. Each ring is double-sided, and presents two distinct views: when looking up, a bird's eye view; and when looking down from above, a skyward view. This inversion echoes the temporary disorientation that travel often causes as we transit multiple time zones to arrive in different places with new perceptions. As passengers approach the sculptures, the rings begin to align concentrically, revealing a rich topographical mosaic. The artwork may even appear to move, compressing or expanding as our view shifts. The result is a dynamic study of both landscape and time, two elements that define our unique experience of place
Karyn Olivier considers history, displacement, migration, and visibility/invisibility through conceptual sculptures made of industrial materials and found objects. In these sculptures, conventional figuration is absent, but the vestiges of bodies—including clothing, shoes, and architectural spaces or objects where human interaction is implied—are central. With this transposal of the human subject, Olivier collapses multiple histories, memories, and times, creating singular material snapshots of larger processes of movement and change.
Olivier recently had a solo exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, which traveled to the University of Buffalo Art Gallery, and has had others at galleries in Italy, Mexico, and the U.S. She has also participated in group exhibitions at the Gwangju and Busan Biennials, the World Festival of Black Arts and Culture, Whitney Museum of Art, Studio Museum in Harlem, MoMA PS1, Mattress Factory, and more.